Cooler weather, better birding……


Cooler weather is here and along with it there have been an influx of some new winter birds arriving.  We have been driving around the local parks over the weekend, but on Monday we decided to drive down to the South Llano River State Park.  It has always been a great place to see and photograph birds.

Here are a few images from there and around here the past several days.  Please click on the images and you will see some amazing enlargements.

Let’s start with a couple from San Angelo State Park.

I was fortunate to get this image of a female Belted Kingfisher.  We were driving along the nearly dry Concho River.  There was about 75 yards of trees and brush between us and the riverbed.  We heard the bird first and that made us do a little searching.  Finally, through the brush and branches I spotted her.  She was watching the water below, something we couldn’t see, and her mind was on that.  She was completely oblivious to us, as she probably couldn’t see us anyway unless she happened to peek back through the brush.  I was able to get the center focus point of my camera on her.

female Belted Kingfisher

female Belted Kingfisher

We made a brief stop at the bird-blind and I was able to get this shot of a Lincoln’s Sparrow.  I think this is my best image of this particular specie.  That also may be true of the above Belted Kingfisher.

Lincoln's Sparrow

Lincoln’s Sparrow

On Monday morning, we made our sojourn to South Llano River State Park.  We were not disappointed.  We visited three of the four blinds there.  Here are some of the results.

Northern Cardinal

Northern Cardinal

Black-crested Titmouse

Black-crested Titmouse

Black-throated Sparrow

Black-throated Sparrow

The following are two photos of an Orange-crowned Warbler.  At first, I didn’t recognize it.  I had forgotten about the orange crown the is very seldom seen, but shows up in these images.  It took me a bit to realize  what I was looking at.

Orange-crowned Warbler

Orange-crowned Warbler

Orange-crowned Warbler

Orange-crowned Warbler

male Lesser Goldfinch

male Lesser Goldfinch

Hermit Thrush

Hermit Thrush

Field Sparrow

Field Sparrow

It was a fun day.  However, we missed seeing a Painted Redstart that had been seen and photographed two days before.  Rats!!  I am always too late.  I was at the airport the day that my ship came in.  Oh well, those things happen and I will have a lucky day soon.  On second thought, I think I am having lucky days all the time.  I am 81 years old, I can get out and crawl through the weeds and have a great wife that (will help me get up) and loves to accompany me to the great outdoors.  What more could I want.

I hope you enjoyed the images as much as I enjoy going and getting them.

Happy Birding!

Bobwhite, Roadrunners, and other stuff.


It is still pretty warm around here.  Mid 90s and higher.  We may just skip fall and go directly to winter without passing go and collecting our $200. 🙂

We did spot some duck types way off in the middle of O.C. Fisher Lake.  I guess they can keep cooler out there.  We are not seeing them closer to shore yet.  As a matter of fact there are few winter birds having arrived yet.

But there are still of our usual residents around and we have no trouble spotting a few at San Angelo State Park.

Here are a few images from our forays there in the past few days.  Enjoy.

This is probably one of the best photos of a Northern Bobwhite that I have taken to date.

Northern Bobwhite

Northern Bobwhite

These American White Pelicans did a brief flyover while were visiting San Angelo State Park.

American White Pelicans

American White Pelicans

Belted Kingfishers always lead me a merry chase.  This one finally stopped for a few minutes near Lake Nasworthy.

Belted Kingfisher

Belted Kingfisher

Notice the remnants of a grasshopper in this photo of the Northern Mockingbird.

Northern Mockingbird

Northern Mockingbird

A Greater Roadrunner at San Angelo State Park.  They seem to be in great numbers there.

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

The Loggerhead Shrike speaks for itself.  It is doing it’s thing, waiting for a snack to impale on one of those thorns.

Loggerhead Shrike

Loggerhead Shrike

The white eye-ring is prominent on this Vesper Sparrow.

Vesper Sparrow

Vesper Sparrow

The next two photos are of the same Greater Roadrunner at San Angelo State Park.  I liked both poses so I decided to post both.

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

Greater Roadrunner

This Nine-banded Armadillo is a young one.  It was feeding along the road in the state park and did not mind me getting this close-up.

Nine-banded Armadillo

Nine-banded Armadillo

I hope you enjoyed these images.  Check back in a few days for a few more.

Happy Birding!!

Back from Davis Mountains


We have returned from our stay at Fort Davis in the Davis Mountains.  I must say it is one of our best trips there, although the thunderstorms and hail did make things interesting.  First though, before I get to my photographs, there was an “it’s a small world type of thing”.

We have some friends, Suzanne and Sid Johnson, that live in Eldorado, Texas which is about 40 miles south of where we live in San Angelo.  We see them occasionally through the year.  Suzanne recently retired and they bought an RV and have been traveling around the state.  Well, we were on our way the the Davis Mountains, as as we passed the Balmorhea State Park I noticed a Belted Kingfisher on the power line outside the park along the road.  We just happened to be near the entrance to the park.  As I was trying to photograph the kingfisher, a pickup pulling an RV pulled out of the entrance.  The lady in the truck waved to us and jumped from the vehicle.  She turned out to be Suzanne.  Co-incidentally they were heading for the Davis Mountains State Park to stay for a few nights.  We, of course, were heading to nearby Fort Davis to stay, so we were able to get together and go birding with them during our stay.  Much fun.

Now for the photos.  First we saw a total of 65 species during our trip.  Most from the Davis Mountains area, Davis Mountains State Park, Balmorhea State Park, and Lake Balmorhea.  Here is a sampling of those images.

American Kestrel

American Kestrel

Red-tailed Hawk atop a utility pole.

Red-tailed Hawk atop a utility pole.

Chipping Sparrow

Chipping Sparrow

House Finch - female

House Finch – female

Ladder-backed Woodpecker at Davis Mountains State Park

Ladder-backed Woodpecker at Davis Mountains State Park

Clark's Grebes

Clark’s Grebes

Western Grebes

Western Grebes

An interested spectator.

An interested spectator.

Snowy Egret making a landing.

Snowy Egret making a landing.

Great Blue Heron catching a small snack.

Great Blue Heron catching a small snack.

Greater Roadrunner in a yucca plant.

Greater Roadrunner in a yucca plant.

White-faced Ibis

White-faced Ibis

Vesper Sparrow

Vesper Sparrow

Swainson's Hawk

Swainson’s Hawk

Scaled Quail

Scaled Quail

Western Scrub-Jay

Western Scrub-Jay

I think that is the most images that I have ever published in a single post.  I hope you enjoyed them.  Click on any image to see enlargements if you are reading this on a computer.

Happy Birding!!!

 

 

 

Last post for a few days……….


Once again, time has slipped up on me again.  The days are flying by and I get farther behind.  Here we are preparing to leave tomorrow morning to spend three three days in Fort Davis.  It is to belatedly celebrate my 81st birthday that was on October 2.  I felt that I should do one more post before we leave.  Before I go, here are a couple of my favorite shots from the past few days.

Loggerhead Shrike

Loggerhead Shrike

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron

Sorry this is short.  I hope to have some great photos to show you when we return later in the week.  The migration is in full swing in the Davis Mountains area and I am anxious to see if I can add to my 2015 list which is sourly lacking.

So ya’ll have a great week.  We intend to. 🙂